Golden Ears 5 Peaks….a year later
Well, another year has come and gone. Many miles have been logged. There have been ups, and there have definitely been downs. A year ago I ran my first trail race, and it started off with a huge fall in the parking lot before the race even started. This year, thankfully, started off better than that. Not a lot better if I am being completely honest, but at least I didn’t fall.
This time around I went into the race nowhere near as prepared as I had hoped to be, with inconsistent training, a horrible diet, and major nerves. Not sure why I had the nerves, I mean I’ve run this route close to a dozen times and except for that first race I’ve never had a problem with it. In fact, it is probably one of my stronger runs. Which I think is why I had the nerves.
Since I was going into the run with very inconsistent running happening ( I was maybe getting in 1 run a week), my diet has slipped BIG TIME, and I haven’t been overly consistent at the gym, I was not feeling 100% confident. For that reason I had decided to scrap all original goals for this run out the window and just go into it as a regular Saturday morning run.
That thought process actually worked really well for me. I sat myself in a pretty good wave group, felt good off the start and I was off. Km #1 I wanted to take a little easy, find my footing, get my breathing under control. Km’s #2 - #4 was where I was hoping to push myself a little harder, not too much because I knew that the big incline was still ahead, but enough to get some good time going. I scrapped my regular 10:1’s, and decided that I wasn’t going to walk until I had to, and that would probably come during incline. I knew incline would be a challenge, but I was actually ready to tackle it. Slow and steady was my plan. Once I hit the waterfall I knew it was downhill from there and I could just fly!!
Then I hit KM#2 and my plan was once again thrown out the window. My calves started cramping up on me. I was hoping to avoid a hamstring cramp, I was not expecting my calves. So I decided to take a quick walk (about 30 seconds) and stretch it out a bit. Perfect, seemed to have worked. I was back on track, feeling good….not as good as I had hoped, but better than a minute ago.
I now hit the road, crossed over and was about to start my trek up. That’s when it hit me. My achilles! I could barely move my feet. Each step I took was complete and utter agony. I kept moving, purely out of fear that if I stopped I wouldn’t be able to get moving again. Step by step, I pushed through. I don’t remember the last time I have felt that much pain. I got to the halfway point of my upwards trek and was now fighting back the tears. I still don’t know if they were from the pain or from being so pissed off and frustrated. I didn’t know if I would be able to run any more of it, and I was now dreading the downhill, I was beyond frustrated. Hit the waterfall, saw it flatten out, and I knew that I had to just go. I ran through the water, looking for the deepest part hoping the cold shock of the water would help my feet. Oh yeah, that’s the other thing…the trail was DRY! I don’t remember running on it this dry, and it was hot. There was no breeze and no water to help cool you down.
Anyways, across the waterfall I went and I just started to run. It hurt, but I was determined to run the rest. Thankfully after the first 100m I was able to find some sort of a groove, that and downhill was a lot easier on my feet. Not easier on my legs, but easier on my feet. I just wanted this race over, and I really wanted to finish with a better time than last year. And that’s exactly what I did.
5Peaks Golden Ears 2012 5Peaks Golden Ears 2013
Distance: 8.61km Distance: 8.61km
Time: 1:09:59 Time: 1:01:04
Pace: 8’15”/km (avg) Pace: 6’57”/km (avg)
KM #1: 185m (elevation) 8’06”/km KM #1: 6’48”/km
KM#2: 211m (elevation) 7’34”/km KM#2: 6’53”/km
KM#3: 203m (elevation) 7’26”/km KM#3: 6’33”/km
KM#4: 216m (elevation) 7’40”/km KM#4: 6’35”/km
KM#5: 292m (elevation) 11’37”/km KM#5: 11’09”/km
KM#6: 284m (elevation) 9’45”/km KM#6: 8’18”/km
KM#7: 197m (elevation) 7’17”/km KM#7: 6’39”/km
KM#8: 143m (elevation) 7’15”/km KM#8: 6’30”/km
A little bit of a different post for me :) As you can see these pictures have absolutely NOTHING to do with running, training, fitness or clean eating. And I LOVE IT!! This has become my new little hobby….my happy place that doesn’t involve the gym.
4 weeks ago I started a Level 1 cake decorating class. I’ve always enjoyed “decorating” cakes and cupcakes, and have all these grand ideas for cakes/cupcakes for my kids birthdays, but they never quite turned out how I had hoped. So, I thought, enough putting it off, time to go for it and just register.
Let me say, if the “product” didn’t cause me to lose any and all willpower I may or may not have, then I would bake and decorate every single day. My waistline just can’t handle all these cakes around all the time.
Anyways, I just wanted to share a little something about my life that doesn’t involve fitness. Oh, did I mention I’ve already signed up for two more classes? Thank goodness these ones only require 1 cake for the final project :)
Taking a leap….
Last night I went and saw Jillian Michael’s Maximize your Life tour. (Thanks again to my amazingly wonderful husband for the ticket and the night off). I have to admit, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I’m a fan of her podcasts, so I went into the evening with an open mind excited to find out what was in store.
It started out the way most people would have expected and what many there were probably hoping for. She spoke about weight loss, exercise, healthy choices….I have to say this. The Jillian that is portrayed on The Biggest Loser was not the Jillian that I saw last night. I know, I know…she gets edited a certain way for tv ratings, and to a degree that is a part of who she is, but she is a very charismatic, passionate, and entertaining speaker.
Anyways, talking about the event isn’t where I wanted to go with this. It is leading me to my point, and where I stand right now. The second half of the show was about “you”. “Your choices”, “your actions”, “your repetitive behaviour” and what it has led to. Why do we do what we do, what do we want to do, how can we be our truest self? And it honestly got me thinking. Why do I constantly sabotage my diet…and I know that’s what I do. Why do I get into an amazing fitness routine and then start to find excuses to “skip” out? Why have I always been on the verge of taking the next step to something I really want, but never taking the leap?
I am terrified. I am terrified of failure. Now, delving into even more of what she spoke about last night, if I follow back to figure out why, I know exactly where it traces back to. That story of my life I am not ready to put out there for all to read. BUT, I know where it comes from.
I have been struggling lately trying to figure out what I want to do when both my girls are in school full time. I want to go back to work, but I also want to be an active mom. I know I don’t want to go back to what I did before they were born, so what do I want to do?
Before we moved out here I wanted to take my Pilates training/certification, become a pilates instructor. I thought that would be turning something that I love into something I can share with others. That didn’t work out due to our move. That move however should not have stopped me altogether from pursuing the dream. But my self doubt and fear of failure took care of that for me. What if I found a training facility/program? What if I didn’t pass the courses? Worse yet, what if I pass everything and then have to do all the practicum hours? How does it work? Who would let me teach at their studio? What if the class is a flop and I, oh what’s the word……FAIL!!
Then I got into running and strength training. If there is something that I love even more than pilates, it’s strength training. The feeling of power, strength, success. Seeing the transformations that people can make with their bodies, it is amazing and exhilarating to me. So then I got thinking…why not personal training? Oh, why do I start off by asking a question? If I have learned anything from myself it’s that I can shoot down any question pretty fast. Again, the questions start flooding in. I have no relevant education, how would I even start? What if I don’t get accepted into a program? What if I do, then what? Who would want to learn from me? How would I be able to motivate others if I can’t even hold myself to a diet and fitness program?
And that’s when it dawned on me, what Jillian was asking. What are we doing to keep ourselves in our situations? How are we not living our truest lives? (She had a much better way of saying it, but hopefully you get the idea). I sabotage myself, lose the weight, put just enough back on to discourage myself, get strong but hold back so that I don’t get strong enough, run but don’t push to be viewed as a strong runner. And why do I do it? So that I can’t fail. If I don’t push myself hard enough for what I want then I don’t stand a chance in failure along the way.
I can’t do it anymore. I have to be happy with who I am, be prepared to fail along the way, and if I can open myself up to the possibility of failure and that failure is not a bad thing, then I will be able to open myself up for greatness. And isn’t that the point? Isn’t that what I am trying to teach my daughters? To just go for what you love, go after your dreams, and don’t be afraid. Learn from mistakes, and come back smarter.
No more waiting, no more sabotaging, it’s time for me to acknowledge what I want and to go after it. I am painfully terrified of this. As I sit here and write this it is taking everything I have not to delete this entire post and forget all about it. I guess this will be my first step. To push the “publish” button.
“If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.”
That about sums it up. I have a lovely ability, like many others I am sure, of staying in my comfort zone. So when I got an email on Friday asking to move up a speed group for my Saturday run group I just had to laugh. What else could I do? I could give in to the complete an utter terror that had swept over me, panic about not being able to keep up, let self doubt win. But instead I laughed, and hesitantly accepted the challenge.
And I am so glad I did. It felt great. My breathing was challenged, my heart rate was elevated, I was at the back of the group. But I didn’t care. Well, that’s not true…my anxious side was worried I was going to irritate people by holding them back, and my competitive side didn’t like being at the back of the pack. My competitive side won out and I pushed myself forward.
I may not be able to run with group 1 every time, but I will do my best, train my hardest, in order to get there, stay there, and pass ;-)
Thank you KC for inviting me to move up, pushing me and continuing to challenge me!!
Another day in clean eating. Today the girls and I made homemade granola bars, and for lunch I had a delicious sandwich filled with veggies, avocado and “yogurt cheese”, with a strawberry goat cheese salad. One week in and Im finding it easier and easier. The key, make sure you have a fridge and pantry stocked with clean items, that way you aren’t scrambling. Set yourself up for success in advance :-)
Broke out the trail shoes and went for my first run in nearly 4 weeks! I’m not going to lie, it was tough. My legs felt great, but it was almost like I had forgotten how to breathe. I had cramps, I was tired, but I was so happy to be back.
Tonight’s attempt at clean eating, successful and delicious. Homemade pie crust, egg white (with 1 whole egg) quiche filled with broccoli, red pepper, crimini mushrooms, sharp cheddar (all organic. And alongside mixed greens, strawberries and crumbled goat cheese (again all organic). NO sugars, no preservatives, no un-pronounceable ingredients. Clean and fresh. And I have to say, the crust turned out fantastic!
Today kicked off the start of clean eating! And let me tell you, I now understand why so may people eat processed crap! First off, grocery shopping now takes a LOT longer, reading labels is depressing and frustrating, the cost is much higher and you have to prepare a TON!! Everything is pretty much made from scratch.
So, today started off with oats with flaxseed, chia seed, almonds, pumpkin seeds, raisins,and goji berries and 1/2tbsp of natural almond butter mixed in. I failed to get a picture of my lunch…sprouted bread, avocado, tomato, sprouts, cucumber (it was delicious). And dinner, shrimp tacos with homemade taco seasoning and salsa. The wraps were one of the hardest things for me to find, but success!!
Overall, pretty tasty! I don’t think that we will be a 100% clean family, that is just unrealistic at the moment. BUT, with that said, I am going to make sure to do my best and cook as clean as possible.
On the agenda tomorrow…clean banana bread and muffins, clean chicken salad, and clean tomato soup and sandwiches :)
Do not be fooled though….I will NOT give up my coffee or wine!
It’s funny. After I finished my 1st 1/2 marathon and I was gearing up to run my second, running had become a chore. It was something I had to do. This was NOT what I signed up for. I never wanted it to be something that I dreaded. It was supposed to be my release, my happy place, time to clear my head and work off stress and anxiety. Instead it was causing me stress an anxiety.
I worked through it, took some good advice to heart and finished my training and race strong. That being said, I also decided to take some much needed time off. Running and I took a bit of a break from each other. It was time to find the love again.
I haven’t been doing nothing, in fact these past 3 weeks I have been hitting the gym, and I’ve been really pushing myself. I’ve strengthened my love for strength training, and have been working on a new outlook to running.
Something finally seems to have clicked, and the other day I actually pulled out my runners. I didn’t run, but I pulled them out if the closet corner and held them. I know that sounds kind of funny, but it was very soothing. It was familiar, and calming. I haven’t felt that in a long time. Then this morning, I woke up and as I was walking around the city I suddenly took notice of all the runners out. I missed it! I wanted to be out there too. THIS is what I have been waiting for.
I am finally ready to lace up my shoes again and just RUN!